Old Jun 17, 2013, 5:29 AM
Matt123 Matt123 is offline
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 3
Default Air Berlin: Etihad name change for HONEYMOON!

Dear all,

I need help!

I'm flying with Air Berlin from Düsseldorf to Bangkok via Abu Dhabi (and back) for my honeymoon in late August. The part from Abu Dhabi to Bangkok is with their partner airline, Etihad.

When I booked the flights in December, I entered my fiancée's name as her married name. Her passport expired in April, so we planned to get her married name on the new one. She is from Luxembourg, and we've now found out that it's not possible to change your name on your passport in Luxembourg: You always keep your maiden name, and take your married name as a kind of semi-official extra bit. We didn't know when we booked.

I called Air Berlin on Friday to change the name. They can do that, but Etihad will only change three letters (for a fee of $75 dollars, which I don't mind paying). I've called both airlines customer service lines (Air Berlin in German and English) and they all say I have to cancel the flights and either rebook them or not rebook them. We took out travel insurance, but it obviously doesn't cover quirks of Luxembourgish passport protocol. We'd only get the tax back, and lose the rest.

My fiancée has been in tears for two days. It's our honeymoon...

The level of customer service has been appalling. The Air Berlin staff laughed at me and said "you should've thought of that when you booked". I asked to speak to managers/supervisors from Air Berlin and Etihad, and was told they'd "all gone home". Air Berlin took my number and promised to get a manager to call the next day. That didn't happen. The girl at Air Berlin's English line didn't even write my number down. I asked her to repeat it and she burst into giggles and said she'd forgotten.

I either need to figure out a way we can still go, or figure out a way of getting as much money as possible back. I cannot afford to cancel and rebook and the new price.

Even if Etihad wanted to show some flexibility (they don't), they claim to be unable to access the flight details because we booked it with Air Berlin. Even if Air Berlin wanted to help, they claim to be unable to do anything because it is Etihad's policy.

We're finding out today whether it's possible to get some kind of extra document from the Luxembourgish passport authority. However, even if it is, I don't know whether either airline would accept it.

Ultimately it's in the airlines' interests for me to cancel (they get money) and then someone else to book our places (they get lots more money).

Their customer service has made no effort to help whatsoever.

Any help you could give would be gratefully appreciated!
Old Aug 24, 2013, 9:17 AM
martinpc martinpc is offline
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Alicante Spain
Posts: 16
Default matt123

My friend,you will as much as i have from "customer service",ZILCH.They stole 268.28e from me for a so called name change.Any excuse to boost there revenue and treat passengers no better than baggage,After you have paid of course.In my case it seems that we had a over zealous lady on check in that day!!!! Or perhaps she is on commission?Do not give up,i will never give up.Hopefully they will wish they had settled with me?
Old Aug 26, 2013, 12:19 PM
martinpc martinpc is offline
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Alicante Spain
Posts: 16
Default matt123

I am sick of reading about how these airlines are treating us.It is obvious,the airline can do whatever they like and it does not matter who gets hurt.They do what ever suits them,they can change your flight time,they can change your flight DATE,you try to do either and you will PAY?If you make a simple mistake on the spelling of a name,you will PAY.Book your hotel and flight well in advance,and God forbid one of you cannot go,No Refund?I feel sorry for you,the airlines do not give a S--T.It is about time an effort is made to stop them.My friend i must have sent AIR BERLIN at least 25 e mails,ALL ignored,tried phoning them in Berlin,always engaged.They think i will go away,give up,I have told them they underestimate the English resolve?

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